25 Jul

climbing the chart

With his third home run in three games, all wins by the first-place Milwaukee Brewers, Hunter Renfroe moved into the top 10 Sunday on the all-time homer list among Mississippi-born players in the big leagues. The Crystal Springs native and former Mississippi State star has 144 career homers, equaling the total of Hattiesburg native Charlie Hayes. Gulfport’s Bill Melton and Greenville’s Frank White are tied for eighth at 160. The all-time leader is Vicksburg native Ellis Burks with 352. Amory’s Mitch Moreland, not formally retired but not currently playing, stands sixth with 186. Renfroe has 16 homers this year, his seventh in MLB. His career-high is 33, which he reached with San Diego in 2019. The Padres, his original club, traded him to Tampa Bay, where he hit eight homers but batted just .156 in 42 games in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. The Rays non-tendered Renfroe, and he signed with Boston, where he had a huge year with 31 homers, 33 doubles, 96 RBIs and a .259 average. Nevertheless, the Red Sox traded him to Milwaukee. P.S. Dakota Hudson threw five strong innings (five hits, one run, three walks, six strikeouts) in a rehab start for Triple-A Memphis in the St. Louis chain. The ex-MSU standout, who went on the injured list with a neck strain, is 6-6 with a 4.10 ERA for the Cardinals. … The signing deadline for 2022 draftees with college eligibility remaining is a week from today, and to this point three Mississippi products have signed, according to mlb.com. Mississippi State’s Landon Sims, the first player from the state to go at No. 34 overall, signed for a reported $2.4 million with Arizona. State’s Logan Tanner, the No. 55 pick, got $1.03M from Cincinnati. And 20th-round pick Ke’Shun Collier from Meridian Community College inked with the Chicago Cubs for $100,000.

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